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 Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012

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CaptainBalroga
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PostSubject: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 13 2012, 20:15

My fellow members of The Dark City, it gives me great pleasure to present to you my report of the 2013 NOVA Open ass seen through my eyes. The purposes of this account include persuading our members to take part in events like these when they are able, showing off some truly amazing armies, to detail my personal experience for honor value, to demonstrate some tournament tactics, and because I promised that I would. To be blunt, this write up is not trivial, and without that last purpose I may not have finished. Please enjoy!

Thursday, August 30

The NOVA Open is a wargaming event of massive proportion: if the tournament organizer Mike Brandt is to be trusted, it was the second-largest pure wargaming event worldwide this year. The 40K GT had over 200 entrants, and the overall attendance was over 600. Despite this, the entire event fit into one hotel: the Hyatt Regency in Crystal City, in the neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia. This put it within striking distance of the nation's capital in Washington D.C. Most attendees booked rooms for discount rates at the hotel, but I was lucky enough to have a sister living in D.C. She and her boyfriend were leaving town for Labor Day weekend, so I was given the run of their apartment, with a great view of the Washington Monument, only 10 minutes from the event! Get as close to your venue as possible, and use any local connections to drop costs. Though there were other tournaments I could have spectated on Thursday evening, such as the 40K Invitational, but I instead chose to bring over dinner for my hosts that night and spend time with them in my gratitude. I also had some last-minute painting to get done, but more on that later.

Speaking of the 40K Invitational, it's worth noting that did not qualify for it! My gaming club ran several prep tournaments where the winners could qualify, but I did not make the cut, being green and inexperienced. I'm still green and inexperienced, but that's not the point. The point is that you should prepare, especially in timed matches for stakes, and using the tournament's scenarios. Untimed matches are fine too, and special thanks goes out to ShadowsRevenge for contacting me out of the blue and offering to run a practice game with me. That last game was critical to getting the last feeling for my army before I committed to it fully, and for that I am grateful. You should probably have a solid idea of what your army is going to be, but last-minute changes aren't terrible, especially since the edition was so new.

Friday, August 31

After getting a decent 6 hours of sleep (and, yes, that is decent for a tournament, if you're getting 6+ you're doing all right). I hit the local grocery store to requisition food. It is much cheaper to pack food in than to buy it there, always, and you can always grab a quick bite during a game, which can be very handy! At 9 AM I was showing up quite early, considering the event wasn't starting until 2 PM, but that was due to logistics with parking at my host's place. This gave me a chance to scope out the venue, browse the ample vendors, go through my swag bag (a really nice bag- the laser pointer pen was worth it's weight in gold) and, most importantly, chat it up with my friends in the Invitational, the jerks. Though we had been given the mission primers weeks in advance, I could have also used this time to acquaint myself with the missions. As I will repeat many times before, the mission is everything!

With that, I'll explain how the tournament was to be run. There were to be 8 rounds total, but you had to qualify for the last 2. The first 4 rounds were to be placement rounds, where generalship would be evaluated by completion of mission goals. These goals were standard game goals- control objectives, control table quarters, kill points, and each would rotate in importance to determine who won the game. That is, if you tied on the primary goal, you used the secondary, then tertiary, then victory points to determine winner. Lots of statistics! However, this diligence let brackets be formed for Rounds 5 and 6. if you won both of those, you won your bracket of 16 and advanced to Round 7 and 8 to compete for the top places and prizes. Generalship through the first 6 rounds and paint score determined the overal winners.

With that out of the way, I feel I can get to what some may really be interested in: the games. I apologize for the overall lack of pictures, but I tended to focus on the games getting completed in 2.5 hours. Perhaps next time I'll bring a servo-skull. Here's my army.

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-08-31_13-24-17_937

Andrew's Dark Eldar “Skyward Blade Corsairs”

Counts-As Duke Sliscus (the titular Captain Balroga)
3 Trueborn, 3 Blaster, Raider, Night Shields
3 Trueborn, 3 Blaster, Raider, Night Shields
3 Trueborn, 3 Dark Lance, Venom, 2 Cannon, Night Shields
5 Wyches, Haywire, Venom, 2 Cannon, Night Shields
5 Wyches, Haywire, Venom, 2 Cannon, Night Shields
5 Wyches, Haywire, Venom, 2 Cannon, Night Shields
5 Wyches, Haywire, Venom, 2 Cannon, Night Shields
9 Warriors, Raider, Splinter Racks, Night Shields
10 Warriors, Dark Lance
6 Reavers, 2 Heat Lance, 1 Cluster Caltrops
Ravager, 3 Dark Lance, Night Shields
Ravager, 3 Dark Lance, Night Shields
Razorwing, 2 Disintegrator, Flickerfield, Cannon

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-08-31_13-24-32_214

That's my most concise way of writing it. I expected and feared Grey Knights and Necrons, hence the Night Shields. Wyches to try and deal with mech spam, Reavers to harass and do late-game contesting, and plenty of other shooting. I decided to ignore fliers entirely, which is a tournament concept that I borrowed from Magic: the Gathering. Basically, if you have a matchup that, even after adding in elements to counter that matchup, it's still really bad, it may be better to just ignore it entirely, make your army better at fighting everyone else, and hope you don't face it. I don't think all concepts from other games are applicable to 40K, but this is one that I think is very relevant.

_________________
Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 Galo11


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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 13 2012, 20:16

Round 1

Jason Sniffen's Grey Knights and Space Marines

2 Inquisitor in Terminator Armor with Psycannons and Psychic powers
2 squads of 10 Terminators with 2 Psycannons/Psybolt
Dread Knight with Sword and Teleporter

Shrike
8 Assault Terminators
5 Scouts with Missile Launcher

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-13_12-05-16_489

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-08-31_14-25-05_549

Grey Knights! Sort of! He was using Chaos models, and had a beautiful conversion for his Dread Knight to imitate Fulgrim in his Daemon Primarch form. He was kind enough to put pictures on his army list print out, which is pretty damn cool.

The game itself was fairly simple- he won the roll and deployed in a spread out fashion. I deployed in a bunch on the far side of his Dread Knight (I reserved my walking Warriors), and he Infiltrated his assault terminators very close. His early game was not very exciting, running his Terminators and shooting snipers and missiles. He teleported his Dreadknight Turn 1, but it was still very far off. My choice of what to shoot was tough, though dropped some of his Scouts early. I maneuvered my Ravagers to try and give them ruin cover, while keeping my other units close together. Two units of Termies were close, as he combat squadded. Ultimately, I focused my fire on the Assault Terminators with my poison and the Grey Knights with my Lances to optimize what saves I made him take. The Dreadknight was actually pretty easy, and my Trueborn felled it- who needs the full 4 Blasters? There was a critcal turn where the last of his Space Marines got close, but charging three partial Wych squads into the mix proved their undoing. Once they fell, I had plenty of firepower to spare to taking down his other squads.

I won! In a kill point mission! Against Terminators! I don't think I quite tabled him as time ran out, but I would have won regardless- important since he didn't actually have to combat squad, though doing it helped him split his firepower. A good opponent with a beautiful army.

[bRound 2[/b]

TJ's Grey Knights and Blood Angels

Librarian, Sword/Shield Powers
3 Sanguinary Priests, Jump Packs
4- 10 man Assault squads, meltas and flamers

Xenos Inquisitor, Power Armor, Psychotroke
10-man Strike Squad, Psycannon/Psybolt

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-08-31_18-03-27_101

More Grey Knights with allies! Actually, it was the other way around, and he seemed to use the Knights as a firebase, or possibly a distraction, as the assault Marines were plenty good. I deployed...terribly. With Hammer and Anvil, I deployed in a very awkward fashion. The picture will illustrate why this is so- NOVA has extensive line of sight blocking terrain, so it hinders shooting, but it doesnt actually hinder jumpers or assault troops. Thus I found myself running for the middle with my footbound Warriors, only to have them assaulted Turn 1 by some forward-placed Blood Angels! Awkward. My shooting was somewhat scattered, and I didn't really have a plan going in. At times I would shoot a unit down to a few guys and not quite have enough power left to finish it off (mainly due to FNP) and it would escape. Then I would be pressured somewhere else, shift my focus, and the alive unit would move to safety and an objective. This happened a grand total of twice, which is two times too many. Admittedly, my army is not very suited to getting up in an opponent's face, so I wasn't going to charge into the middle block after an assault squad with 5 Wyches. In the end, I flubbed Turn 1, I didn't have a plan, and as a result I couldn't overcome a very resilient and threatening army. I should have thought ahead a little more and imagined what I would do if I was my opponent, and what he would really care about in my army.

Oh, and the Stormraven didn't do a whole ton. Both of our fliers failed to show until Turn 3, so tt took out my Razorwing, hit something else, and then the game was over. Not so terrible.

That was Day 1 for me. Afterwards, I met up with the Beltway Gamers guys for buffalo wings and beer. Everyone seemed to have a “bad beat” story, and if you go to a tournament I highly recommend cultivating your own story to share at such occasions. “Oh, I did this, and he did that, and then a rolled this, and then I failed six charges, and the game went down hill from there.” You've heard them, you love them. You will never, ever have the worst beats, there will always be someone who lost worse than you, so your misery will always seem lessened, and you can laugh it off. I don't advise making your story about a game you ended up winning, either, nor about judge rulings (unless they were blatantly unfair, not likely to happen at big events). I would wager money that random charge length will simplify the bad beat story generation process for months to come, until we all get sick of hearing about it and complain about something else. If you couldn't tell due to whatever, this section was tongue in cheek, and should not be taken seriously.

_________________
Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 Galo11


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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 13 2012, 20:16

Saturday, September 1

Another 6ish hours of sleep, and I was feeling it driving to the hotel. I had left my army with my friend the night before, and a bit of panic ensued as he didn't pick up his phone. If he had slept in, or turned his phone, off, or something else, I might not have had an army to play with! Fortunately, we got in touch, and a quick scramble got my army on its display board (okay, it was a white board. Function over form, I'll have it looking nice by next NOVA). I left my cases with the hotel concierge in order to lighten my load as much as possible. A quick swig of a free Vitamin B12 drink and some water and I was set to play Round 3.

Round 3

Josh's Blood Angels and Imperial Guard

Dante
10 Sternguard with Lascannon
Sanguinary Priest
Techmarine
2-5man Sanguinary Guard, Pistols, Banner, Fists
5 Death Company
Death Company Dreadnought
Stormraven, Plasma Cannon

Colonel Iron Hand Straken!
And his Platoon!
2-10 man Veterans, Plasma, Flamer, Camo Cloaks

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-01_08-33-06_788

More Blood Angels, and a Marine advising some Guardsmen. Even harder than the last army, but with much fewer models. I kind of hand-waved looking over his specific army stats- I had fought Blood Angels before, but not many Sanguinary Guard. Thus, I was surprised when I learned that they have a 2+ save, and that Death Company have FNP standard. This would have been a problem, but ultimately I was fine. My opponent bolstered a ruin in his deployment zone and plunked his Guard and Sternguard in, with his Death Company forward in area terrain with some Sanguinary Guard and Straken. Dante, the Priest, and more Sanguinaries deployed, which surprised me. I deployed so his lascannon was out of range due to Night Fight and prepared to undo the mistake of yesterday and focus his dudes down. His Dread was on his other flank, and some Wyches were set against it.

The game progressed as I alluded to- I started shooting and was shocked at his resiliency (he also had Stealth-Ruins from Warlord trait). The primary mission was objectives, and it would be hard to move his Sanguinary Guard or his Guardsmen, as they all had 2+ and 3+ or 2+ in cover. Blasterborn did most of the casualties, negating Feel No Pain and making him use his worst save. The Sternguard were entirely flummoxed by my deployment, and didn't get a shot off until Turn 3, which I made a cover save on. His placed his big squad of Dante and friends on a side objective after I verbally admitted that I wasn't going to be able to shoot them down, and once I saw he wasn't going to leave it there I stayed clear and stopped shooting at them. Afterwards he told me he was content to have them act as a threat bubble, but this is bad thinking! No other portions of his army were taking the fight to me, and I actually lost only 1 skimmer during the entire battle. One! That's criminal! His Stormraven put a hurting on my Warriors camping out on a home objective, but I got to go to ground each time because there was otherwise nothing to shoot at. The end of the game (close enough to time being called that we couldnt play another Turn- I chose to go second) came down to Duke Sliscus and his squad assaulting a Techmarine and some Guardsmen on the center objective. Just in case the combat didn't turn out well, I boosted my bikes to to contest the objective Dante was sitting on. As it was, the combat didnt turn out well! The Warriors killed the Guard, but the Techmarine challenged and absorbed Sliscus' limp-wristed wrath, but failed to penetrate his Shadow Field. Thus, the center was contested, but I won 2-1 as I had snuck some Wyches over to the side after they killed the Dread by throwing a grenade at it. I highly recommend throwing your grenades as you skim by- yes, your opponent will ask to check the rules, yes, time will be wasted, but the style points are worth it.

2-1! Now that's more like it.

Round 4

Ender's's Grey Knights

2 Inquisitors
20 Grey Knight Terminators, Psycannons/Psybolt
2 Dreadnoughts, Autocannons/Psybolt Ammo
2 Stormravens
Aegis Line+Quad Gun

My opponent seems to have taken his army list with him, as I couldn't find it with my stuff. I also forget his name! I remember he said he wrote an article on flier movement on Bell of Lost Souls, which credits him as Ender, so that's what I shall call him. This game came down to Warlord Traits, I'll say it right now. Any tactical maneuvering on my part was outdone by the swings in luck both of us had. My opponent chose “Warlord and squad get Outflank” and I got “Opponent has -1 to Reserves”. NOVA let us roll on two tables and pick our results. Guess which one was decisive!

My opponent reserved his Warlord and 10 Termies and set up an Aegis Line near the side of the table. (unbroken, per NOVA FAQ, now official). His Dreads were next to a hill and his Quad Gun was in front of his deployment zone so he could advance to man it. I set up opposite behind a ruin that I hoped would hide me. It didn't quite get the job done, and the Dreads managed to mount the hill and open fire on my Ravagers, stunning one and shaking the other. I ran my foot Warriors to the middle, shunted some Venoms forward, boosted the Duke's boat to the far opposite flank to attempt a roundabout encircling, and boosted my Trueborn and Ravager and Reavers along the table edge, looking to take out the Dreads early. In retrospect, I should have just boosted the dang Wyches with them to give them support, and probably the Duke as well! I felt confident I could kill this Toughness 7 3+ armor gun before my Razorwing came on, but 48 poison shots later, it had escaped without a wound- I had failed to kill 2 Space Marine equivalents. I may have literally facepalmed. His response was shockingly kind, and most of my stuff escaped unharmed as cover save after cover save let me dodged psybullets. The Blasterborn, Reavers, and Ravagers teamed up on the Dreads while the Venoms maneuvered and started to shoot up his Termies- to little avail until one salvo managed to bring down 3 (so memorable those 1's were!). My Razorwing had come on, but was Shaken by the Quad Gun, so it reluctantly had to Snap Shoot its Dissies and Cannon, leaving the Missiles for later. Meanwhile, he only got 1 Stormraven, which made quick work of the Duke's Raider, but his men were unharmed. More shooting, more maneuvering, some bad plays which resulted in a stray Wych squad getting massacred, lots of crazy stuff. Importantly, on Turn 3 he rolled double 3's for his reserves, which with my -1 left almost half of his army high and dry. As my luck began to rebound, he kept losing men and hull points.

By this point, the game had gone on for some time, and it was looking like we wouldn't get a Turn 4. Neither of us had all of our units lined up and if the game would have been a rout for me. We sped through the end of 3 and managed to get his Termies, and critically their outflank roll was on the side most of the action was on- they shot through one Wych squad, but the another was intact to claim the objective. Spare Warriors and Wyches on other objectives sealed the game for me juuuuuuuuust as the clock ran out- we tied 2-2 on quarters and I won on objectives. We both shook on it, lamented the sketchy rolling on both of our parts, and dug into out lunches ravenously. There was a decided trend of games not finishing “on time”- barely doing 4 turns is not 40K as she is played in the game store. Rules questions were a large part of it, though, so I feel that when people know their armies better the game speed will pick up.

Now I was in the 3-1 bracket appropriate for how I completed the objectives. Lose a game here, and I was out for Sunday but could still play Round 6. Remember how I said I ignored my bad matchup and didn't put in any anti-flier units?

_________________
Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 Galo11


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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 13 2012, 20:16

Round 5

Doug McNaron's Necrons

Imotekh the Stormlord
2 Despair Crypteks
2 Storm Crypteks
1 Chrono Cryptek
2-6 man Death mark squads
2- 6 man Warrior Squads
4- 6 man Immortal Squads
Scarab squads numbering 3,3,5
Oh, and 8 Night Scythes

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-01_15-13-42_652

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-01_16-12-48_234

The terror I felt as I saw my opponent's army was only matched by the happiness I felt at his extremely happy demeanor and the overall quality of his modeling job- those lights looked sick, and Imotekh's Scythe was even more blinged-out. He also put it together on an insanely short time frame; only about two weeks.

Now, as for the game, it was Vanguard deployment, and he gave me first turn. The center objective was a Skyfire Nexus- if my Warriors could get on it, they could possibly shoot their Dark Lance at full BS and maybe glance or who am I kidding, I'm done, aren't I? Well, I could have done better. I had no way to table his Scarabs Turn 1, as there was plenty of terrain to completely block my Line of Sight and he could reactively deploy to stymie my efforts. Instead, I chose to get everything as far forward into his zone as I could. I flat-outed everything Turn 1 behind a hill safely in his zone. Surely, his fliers will have to go over me, and I can gain precious time? Well, some stray scarabs advanced, threatening a Turn 1 assault..damn Beast movement, and they would have gotten that assault had Imotekh's lightning not wrecked 4 of my skimmers! Yes, Imotekh is insane against people will tons of units on the board, 1-6 Str 8 hits is the perfect thing to destroy Dark Eldar vehicles. I may have been in trouble facing a normal Necron army with Imotekh- I was flat-footed from Turn 1. In the following turns, lightning pounded my men, kept active by the Chronometron Cryptek. Fliers entered the side of the board not clogged with dying elves at extreme angles, and managed to get shots due to the frankly irresponsible way their gun is sculpted- they get to draw the arc from either side of a wide-ass “twin-linked” gun!

Now, here's the funny/tragic part of the game- I almost won in the dumbest way possible. You see, the sheer number of rolls involved with any one shot of a Tesla weapon is thus: roll to hit, re-roll any misses, see how many extra shots got added on, roll to pen, roll jink save, roll damage result if applicable, resolve effect, roll to see if the shot arcs, if it does, resolve that effect, rolling saves, damage, etc. Each shot he fired was about 4 regular guns worth of die rolling. Combined with the movement of the fliers, and this resulted in us getting to 17 minutes left in the round without finishing Turn 3! We weren't exactly the tightest tournament players, is what I am saying. But, it's not like we didn't have a giant clock on the wall, and my opponent even had a timer.

So, with this known, if I had played any slower, I would have won. I would have had 2 objectives claimed by huddling masses of S&M space elves while his metal guys were still embarked on their Scythes- he had not disembarked on his Turn 2 or 3. If I had slowed down my movement or rolling by about 3 minutes, we could not have started another turn per the tournament rules and I would have won in the worst way. I did not do this, and I am damn proud of not doing this, and if you take any advice from my article it is to not do this. In fact, you should probably tip your opponent off if you think time is running out- see Round 4 for an example where we both realized in time that we had to speed up, and thus finished Turn 4 successfully. There are games where managing the clock is an art and part of the game, but it is my opinion that the clock is a necessary evil in 40K, and that you should fight the clock being an influence on the game as much as possible. Try and do as many turns as you can, as random game length allows, and your conscience should be clear.

We had a decent laugh about it later and he got some grief for the almost-tragedy; turns out he's in a league I know some people from, and we met up later. For me, I was out of contention to win my bracket due to facing a bad matchup that I deliberately chose not to include elements for. My strategy to facing it was imperfect, as it depended on escaping his fliers, which is harder to execute than to say. Any strategy I could have tried (including slow-play if I was a jerk) he could have played around. I would take a lot to take this army with its pants down, but he recounted how a Dark Reaper Exarch on a Quad-Gun been decisive in Turn 1 tabling him one game when he didn't know about Crack Shot and left Scarabs in the open. Rather than dwell more on it, I'll go to Round 6.

Round 6

Luke's Space Wolves

Logan Grimnar
Njal Stormcaller
2-5 Grey Hunters, Flamers
5ish Wolf Guard, combi-weapons?
2- 5 man Long Fangs, 4 Missile Launcher
5 Long Fangs, 4 Multi-Melta
Wolf Lord on Thunderwold
2 Thunderwolf cavalry
3 Drop Pods
Aegis Line w/ Quad Gun

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-01_19-00-06_867

His list also seems to have escaped my grasp, though this is fairly accurate. Hammer and Anvil deployment for Table quarters. He won the roll and lined his Aegis at the far edge of his deploymeny, with a line of Missile Long Fangs, the Quad gun in the middle manned by some Grey Hunters with attached Wolf Guard. Everything else went into reserve. I deployed at the far back of my deployment zone, which put me about 45” from his Missiles- hey, guess who has Night Shields? Outranging missiles felt so sweet. I decided to face his inevitable Drop Pods first before I dealt with any Long Fangs, a decision I admire in myself now. I am actually I little shocked I didn't try something else stupid, considering I was playing for points at this time. I even reserved most of the short-range stuff, leaving some Wyche Venoms and Ravagers out and seperate.

Turn 1, Logan and the Long Fangs and Njal and the Wolf Guard dropped in. Here's what I would call the wombo combo (and most people might just call a combo)- Logan gave the Long Fangs Relentless, so they could drop, move, and shoot their multi-meltas......who DOES that? Don't Space Wolves have Sternguard? Or combi-weapons for Wolf Guard? I found out later that he was quite proud of his Logan and Njal models, so he may have wanted to field them for their paint jobs, and this was the best way to use Logan. My Ravager ignited in a ball of melta. Meanwhile, he awkwardly shuffled some other Long Fangs and ran his Wolves forward. On my turn I turned my Venoms to the task of killing some Wolf Guard that could see through windows, betting that I could finished off the Wolves once they got closer- the two Drop Podded squads were the more immediate threat. More explosions followed on his Turn 2, and he leaped some Long Fangs over his wall to try and get in range. On my turn, the cavalry arrived, and both of my big Warrior squads sauntered on. I managed to copy my Necron opponent's strategy of coming on at an extreme angle to get my Raider on while only moving 6” (that or I came on and rotated, I pulled it off one way or another). A hail of poison annihilated even Logan Grimnar's armor, and Njal went up in a poof of dark matter. I realize my language is getting more flowery, but this was quite a CINEMATIC battle. There, I said it, give me my money GW!

The Thunderwolves met the same fate after they failed a 6” charge on a Venom, even taking a wound from pistol Overwatch. Splinters and lance fire finished the job. The remaining turns saw my Razorwing distract some Long Fangs, my Reavers fail to show until Turn 4, and some assorted shuffling. I eventually made a dash with my bikes and Trueborn, and his missiles failed to find their targets, letting me coast to dictate who had what quarter and what objective as I pleased. Win!

My opponent was a little sore, and we both agreed that it would have been a much different game with Dawn of War deployment. Failing the Thunderwolf charge was a particular focus of the postgame. He also lamented the paint score he received, which told me right then that I had nothing, as his models were gorgeous. He gave me some tips, and departed, eager to leave, but he left his great snow-covered display board! I turned it in to the judges, but with not much to go on. If you're reading this somehow, I hope you got your board back, and yes your Logan was the best at NOVA!

After that, I was 4-2 drop, or dropped by the tournament, rather. If I had lost twice in Rounds 1-4 I would still be in the tournament, as was my buddy and his Tau army (with 0 railguns and 9 sniper drones, yeah, that kind of Tau army!). I headed back to my pad to collapse. It was at this point that I realized my legs were aching. I had worn my sandals to both days and had no real discomfort during my matches, but later I could barely move off of the couch! This, dear reader, was the dumbest thing I did all tournament- I should have worn comfortable shoes with foot support, but somehow the toxic mix of excitement, adrenaline, caffeine, sugar, and Vitamin B12 has rendered me immune to agony. Put another way, my combat drugs gave me Feel No Pain. This is really dumb, don't try it, seriously just sit down while your opponent is making his measurements/whatever. The point is to monitor what you ingest and take appropriate breaks. Just because a cute girl is handing you a free bottle of something that will improve your focus, you don't need to take it. No, you won't get her number. Again, this is all for laughs.

_________________
Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 Galo11


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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 13 2012, 20:16

Sunday, September 2

But, wait, you say, aren't you out of the tournament? Yes, but I still get to cheer on my friends, spectate my enemies, consider whether to buy pieces of the Dark Vengeance set (the mini rulebooks sold out in about 5 minutes), and maybe get a game in. I took the D.C. Metro in, but the commute was much longer than I expected- a quick Google Maps estimate of the walking time might have told me that I might have done better finding a cheap parking lot a little closer. Check your commute times. When I got there, Round 7 was just finishing up. Unfortunately, my friend had lost, and everyone I knew was officially out of the competition. That gave me chances to take pictures. I tarried long hours, and watched some of final matches of the GT and the Invitational. I didn't see much Dark Eldar at the top tables, but Eldar allies were rampant, and every army was represented in the greater scheme. A Dark Eldar army as won Best Overall Army- Sum of All Parts. My army was leagues away from this one, which is the first one below. I actually got a 0 on my appearance score, which ticked me off as it gives me no feedback, and they can apparently 0 your score for any number of things. I would recommend not sweating your paintjob so much, though, as really good looking armies by my standards also got miniscule scores or 0's. Your models probably look great, paint judges have high standards so the best can rise to the top. Feel free to look up more pictures of the event online, as mine were taken quickly with a camera phone.


Summary

How would I rate my tournament experience? I would grade it a solid A. Hindsight reveals my gameplay mistakes were not so great as they seemed at the time, and I actually put up some good fights and brought some good play and appearance to the table. I finished 89th overall, which is less than I wanted but probably exactly what I deserved, they took so much friggin data. The value for my money and time was excellent, but this wasn't my first time at the rodeo tournament-wise. It was my first huge Warhammer event, and it felt damn good, like all of the work I had put into learning the game and learning the hobby since I got back into it in the spring paid off. Certainly, I would not be where I am without the help of The Dark City. Every little piece of advice, theory, and experience shared adds up to a lot of knowledge I brought to the table with me, so giving back actually seems natural, though it's easy to say that now that the writing is done. I am definitely going next year, and I hope you all can find time for a tournament near you!

And now, pictures of NOVA!

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-08-31_13-47-12_295
I have hunted for a better picture, and will continue to hunt, but Joe Johnson's army literally made me drool. It appeared amongst a sea of really dynamite armies and moved me. There were rumors about cost-per-Grotesque, but the art is the important thing. Coven takes Sum Of All Parts!

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-08-31_13-51-41_690

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-01_10-37-13_976
This army belongs to my buddy Lance, who I think has an appropriate name for an Eldar player. He allied an Autarch and a Farseer with Lelith, who adds assault vehicles to the Eldar shooting. Lance furnished me his list, which includes his army's fluff on the reverse side! Oh, and just to show off even more, those plants in the back are real. They look waxy and fake, but they are living things. How....Craftworld.

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_20-49-58_859

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_17-31-18_673
My friend Pierre's "Wolf Lord". Who's he fooling?

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_17-33-29_862
St. Celestine fighting an Avatar of Khaine, Eldrad Ulthuan, two Spiritseers and some Wraithguard. Nothing to see here, folks.

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_13-11-24_514

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-37-28_594
NOVA made a bunch of D.C. terrain for their Narrative games to act as centerpieces. I don't know why this one stands out so much....it reminds me of something...oh, yes! Patriotism. And freedom. (note Henry the Brit in the back with the paisley)

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-37-39_445

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-37-58_562

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-40-00_518

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-40-45_943
This Ork won a paint award. That's a nice Deffrolla, I tell you what.

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-41-28_283

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-43-33_582
Nids on the Smithsonian! This can't stand!

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 2012-09-02_15-48-45_835
And that just demonstrates the level of class that this narrative has.

Hope you liked it! Please, for the love of Vect, if you have a question about something or a correction/spellcheck, do not quote an entire post. Just copy+paste or make reference to it. Thank you.

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Mushkilla
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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeThu Sep 13 2012, 21:50

Great stuff! By the sound of things it was a fantastic experience.

Sounded like marines and necrons were the only thing you played against. Looks like the rule of 5/6 of your opponents will be marines still holds true at NOVA.

Thank you so much for sharing. Smile

EDIT:

@CaptainBalroga wrote:
I finished 89th overall

That's very impressive for your first NOVA, well done. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 14 2012, 03:45

Excellent write-up Captain, thank you very much. I don't think that I would have enjoyed playing that many GK and BA armies.

Sounds like you did very well overall and enjoyed yourself. From the results lists online, I think you placed 68th for Appearance, out of 160-odd? That's a pretty good result too, it certainly looks great in your first pic.
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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 14 2012, 12:41

Excellent reports and well done on your battles. Looks like you played well and had a blast so that goes down as a good weekend in my book.

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 14 2012, 19:24

Do you have a link, Gobsmakked? I only looked on the official website, and there is no separate link for Appearance- only the "competitive sort", AKA the list with a lot of 0.000's on it! 68th would make my day, and possibly my year. It would certainly vindicate the late-night efforts I had put in the week before.

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeFri Sep 14 2012, 22:06


I hate to say it Captain, but it looks like I goofed. The link that I did find is actually for 2011, not this year's tournie. I was Googling Joe Johnson's DE army and yours (Andrew's?) to see if I could find more pics and this link was one of the first ones that popped up. I didn't even look at the date contained within the link until just now.

I really must apologize for that. I have searched the NOVA site and tried 2012 variations of the URL, but haven't found anything. Hopefully the fact that they posted it last means that they will at some future time for this year.

http://www.novaopen.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Appearance-Rating-Sort.pdf

Your army does look great, rest assured!
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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeMon Sep 24 2012, 16:27

great write up Captain. Glad you had fun! Maybe next year I can get down there as well. How many DE players did you see down there??? Im betting we were in the low numbers due to the changes of 6th and the general sense that people believed we have been nerfed. Also love how your crushed the termie list. Seems like Harliestar helped you huh Razz

Glad you had fun man, and we need to get a game in sometime again. Maybe at Dropzone this time

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeMon Sep 24 2012, 16:39

There was a DE player who got 6th place with this:

HQ:
Baron

Elites:
3 x Trueborn + 2 x Splinter Cannons
3 x Trueborn + 2 x Splinter Cannons

Troops:
10 x Warriors + Splinter Cannon
10 x Warriors + Splinter Cannon

Elites:
Large Beast Pack - (5 masters, lots of Razorwings and Kymeraes)
6 x Reavers + 2 x Heat Lances
6 x Reavers + 2 x Heat Lances

Heavy:
1 x Chronos
2 x Talos, splinter cannons

Fortification:
1 x Bastion + Quad Gun

HQ:
Maugan Ra

Elites:
5 x Fire Dragons + Exarch + Crack Shot

Troops:
3 x Jetbikes + Cannon
3 x Jetbikes + Cannon

Heavy:
2 x War Walkers

Not the exact list. But pretty impressive none the less!

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeMon Sep 24 2012, 17:43

Hey, look, it's Shadow's list! Not really, but It does look like the principle is similar- make a blob of Rending, put a 2++ and a 2+ save in it, start walking. The lack of vehicles is...disturbing. I guess 18 jetbikes and the Beaststar draw all of the fire away from the exposed infantry, and they won't take any exploding transport damage ever. The Bastion seems like a concession to games that don't have as much LOS blocking cover as NOVA did, or it might also give him better LOS for his Quad Gun BECAUSE NOVA had so mch cover. I wouldn't be shocked if this was the Dark Eldar player who beat my Necron opponent by denying cover with a Quad Gun. I will ponder this army. The Eldar allies have been looking more and more tempting, and the success of an army with 4 Troops units helps confirm my suspicion that Guardian jetbikes are just one of the best objective-snaggers pound-for-pound.

In other news, some club guys managed to snag a good picture of the Dark Eldar's paint victory. Gentlemen, behold!

Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 IMG_5723
Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 IMG_5724

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeMon Sep 24 2012, 19:10

love the grots... they look like something from Hordes with some huge modifications to them.

also a side note, there was a guy down at dropzone who was playing my Harliestar list last time I was there (two weeks ago?) and when I talked to him about how it got nerfed due to the FAQ updates, he tried to tell me how my list work, and talked about synergy and all that jazz... It was quite funny considering he got the list from a friend who mine, who asked me for a copy of it so he can play it at white marsh GW, funny how things come around like that Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeMon Oct 01 2012, 18:07

Great write up, thanks for taking the time to do it. Too much power armour there by the sounds of it. 4 nad 2 is pretty good and sounds like it was a cool weekend, so win as far as I would be concerned.

Kind of agree with your thoughts on fliers, only a quad gun is of any use to us. Trying to out manouvre them is the way I try and play, but 8 scythes is very difficult for DE.
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PostSubject: Re: Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012   Tournament Narrative: NOVA Open 2012 I_icon_minitimeTue Aug 05 2014, 22:26

Just found the site and usually I hate to Necro a thread like this but I am Joe Johnson and those purple DE are mine from the 2012 NOVA. The rumor is true about the Grots...the cost me about $100-$120 in parts and bits each so about $800+ for that unit alone not including the sculpt time etc hehe. It was worth it and they look awesome in person. I dropped out of the tourney circuit for about a year but will be back this year. Due to working as a paint judge I will only be playing in the Narrative with my Knight list.
This Coven list was fun to convert and paint up but after the drop of 6th it became less than useless as a competitive army. I was hoping 7th would be the buff they needed but alas my Finecast and conversions will have to pray for an 8th edition hehe. These guys occasionally see light when I get bored with my Knights or Eldar but for the most part stay in the case.
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